Cardi B threatened with lawsuit over NSFW Marge Simpson Halloween costume

Cardi B in a black dress with a bum cut-out and tall blue Marge Simpson-style hair

Cardi B won the internet when she dressed as a butt-baring Marge Simpson this Halloween – but the artist behind the costume’s inspiration now wants to take legal action.

The rapper donned various costumes as everyone’s favourite cartoon matriarch, including a Thierry Mugler inspired black velvet dress, complete with a cut-out for her derrière.

However, AleXsandro Palombo – an Italian pop-culture artist who regularly includes popular children’s characters such as The Simpsons in their work – says Cardi B’s team never contacted them to authorise the usage of the image.

In an Instagram post, Palombo posted the costume, and their original artwork (created for Vogue in 2013), side-by-side to emphasise the similarities.

In their caption, they wrote: “The original artwork with Marge Simpson wearing a Thierry Mugler dress that Cardi B published without credits, is a creation of artist AleXsandro Palombo and is part of the ‘Marge Simpson Style Icon’ series that the Italian artist created in 2013… a work of reflection on women’s emancipation and gender equality through the most iconic moments of the last 100 years in fashion costume.”

Palombo continued, claiming Cardi and her collaborators used the likeliness of the image “without any authorisation, debasing its original meaning” and “with a clear commercial purpose that has nothing to do with that path of social awareness that has always characterised [their] works”.

In an edit to the caption, Palombo added: “We wrote to Mrs Cardi B and collaborators… still no answer.”

Cardi’s caption did managed to give a nod to Thierry Mugler, the designer who inspired the dress in the first place. It was part of Mugler’s Autumn/ Winter 1995 ‘Pret-a-porter’ collection.

Palombo based their original artwork off this dress. (Pierre Vauthey/Sygma/Sygma via Getty Images)

Palombo’s lawyer, Claudio Volpi, who specialises in intellectual property law, told Artnet News the rapper has violated “the most elementary rules on copyright and Instagram policies”.

Volpi also told the outlet that despite Palombo reaching out to Cardi B’s team to request the artist was credited, nothing happened. This then lead to Volpi sending a formal notice, saying that if Cardi B and her team did not follow through with the demands, they may take legal action.

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